St Mary’s Interfaith Council September Meeting

This month’s interfaith council debrief.

I think we’re going to need to schedule longer blocks of time for these meetings. We’ve had great turnout several meetings running and that leads inevitably to longer discussions.

This last meeting was held on the first of September, at a new and apparently more convenient time of 1700 in the Lexington Park library. Among those represented were Unitarian Universalist, Roman Catholic, Latter Day Saints, Heathen, Methodist, Society of Friends, Jew and Baha’i.

Like I said, a really great turnout.

A few topics dominated the discussion.

On the 19th of this month, which is Saturday after next as I write this, the SMIC has agreed to participate in a local Farming for Hunger event with as many interested folks as we can drum up. It is not necessary to be a member of any faith group, we just want to see interested people helping out. The event will be at a large host farm in southern Maryland, detailed information is available to anyone and everyone who wants it.

Most of this month’s discussion was about the immanent return of the Snack Pack Program. For those just joining the discussion, the Snack Pack Program is designed to provide kid friendly (meaning little to no prep required) food items to economically disadvantaged students. The program is funded entirely by donations and is implemented in the schools through the guidance counselors. We are currently working only with elementary schools in the county. Last year went smoothly for all involved and we hope that with a larger pool of interested people this year will be even better. We will be coordinating rolling food drives through interested groups throughout the school year. It would be beyond amazing to have enough support from the local Pagan/Heathen/Wiccan/Druid/etc communities to actually cover our own month. We’re here, after all, and we’re invested in our communities whether we like it or not. We may as well participate and be part of this tolerant, working together future we keep saying we want. Put our actions where our mouths are, as it were. At least, this is how *I* feel about it.

At this time I have not committed anyone but myself. I will not speak for others, I’m just an information conduit. A few of us partnered with a small LDS congregation last year and we can do so again if there is no interest. But it would be a real shame if we had to do that.

There are a number of community building events coming up this fall and winter in southern Maryland. There’s a celebration of Jewish culture and food (mostly food) at the synagogue in Waldorf this November, at least one fall feast with the UUs, a plethora of open services at different Christian churches throughout the season, and I’m sure we can come up with something- I’ll be out camping with bunches of heathens and pagans over the next few weekends, some of which are open to the public.

The point is, this meeting had one overall theme: we’re not really sure how to do it, but we think it’s time to own up, open up, roll up our sleeves and get to work.

The next meeting will be Tuesday, October 6th at 1700 at the Leonardtown Library (NOT the Lexington Park library) and all are welcome.

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